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Alchemist Sage Purple Gold flew away together with Ouming Yin and Patriarch Pillheart. As they headed out of the array, they suddenly felt that something was amiss after traveling a short distance. The space around them seemed to clamp down on them.
The three alchemist sages felt a chill as they saw a hideous looking old man appear out of nowhere. He had sealed the space around them as he leisurely approached.
"What's the meaning of this?" questioned Ouming Yin.
"Patriarch Pillheart, are you forgetting something?" said Old Snake in an excessively slow manner.
"What?" Patriarch Pillheart suddenly felt a sense of foreboding.
"Weren't you supposed to leave something behind after making a bet with Yi Yun?"
"What!? What nonsense are you referring to!?" Patriarch Pillheart was furious. It was true that he had made a bet with Yi Yun before they entered the array. They had bet twenty-five kilograms of Purple Numinous Herbal Soil against all the manuals the divine alchemist left behind, as well as the Divine Alchemy Cauldron. However, the bet was not about fixing the array. Back then, the array was not yet on the brink of destruction. Furthermore, there was a time limit of two hundred years. Whoever completed the Herb Nurturing Array first would be the winner.
Yi Yun may have calmed the Herb Nurturing Array, but he had yet to complete it. Furthermore, the two hundred years was not up. Yet, the old man was demanding he give up the Purple Numinous Herbal Soil.
"I haven't lost the bet. Are you trying to rob me?"
"Heh, are you kidding me? How do I know where you will be two hundred years from now? Besides, isn't the outcome already obvious? Yi Yun's completion of the Herb Nurturing Array is only a matter of time. As for you, I know you are aware of the overwhelming odds against you. I advise you to leave the soil behind."
After Old Snake spoke, he directly attacked!
He pressed down at Patriarch Pillheart with his palm, striking straight at Patriarch Pillheart's chest.
By that moment, the Nine Li Magus Empire's Aged Blackrock and High Priest had chased up to them. However, they did not stop the battle.
The Heaven Earth Yuan Qi suddenly contracted like a cage, trapping Patriarch Pillheart within.
Ouming Yin and Alchemist Sage Purple Gold were prevented from interfering.
Instantly, Patriarch Pillheart sensed that his life was in great danger. The hideous looking old man in front of him could really rob him of his life!
As an alchemist, Patriarch Pillheart was not as strong as other warriors his level. His strength was far inferior to Old Snake's. Furthermore, he had expended a great deal of energy previously. His fire seed had been forcibly taken away from him and he had suffered mental damage. Considering all these factors, this battle's outcome was obvious. Noticing that Ouming Yin and Alchemist Sage Purple Gold had no intention of helping him, Patriarch Pillheart knew that there was no chance of him defeating Old Snake.
Once he was dead, everything of value that he carried would be taken by the old man, much less the twenty-five kilograms of Purple Numinous Herbal Soil.
Patriarch Pillheart forced himself to withstand Old Snake's strike but it was overly oppressive. In addition, the old man struck like a venomous snake that deliberately sought out his weakest point.
Patriarch Pillheart spat out a mouthful of blood as he flew backward like a kite that had its string cut. Immediately following that, Old Snake's palm came pressing down on Patriarch Pillheart's head!
Once his soul sea was destroyed, everything was over. Even if Patriarch Pillheart didn't die, he would end up being retarded for the rest of his life.
At the instant he vacillated between life and death, Patriarch Pillheart yelled, "Wait!"
Patriarch Pillheart quickly retreated as he threw an interspatial ring out. He opened a gap from Old Snake and said, "That's the Purple Numinous Herbal Soil you want!"
Old Snake grabbed the interspatial ring and injected his perception into it. Indeed, the Purple Numinous Herbal Soil was inside.
Old Snake gave Patriarch Pillheart a sinister look. He was considering the consequences of killing him anyway.
Old Snake was naturally not conflicted by the act of killing Patriarch Pillheart. However, it was something the Nine Li Magus Empire did not wish to have happen on their land.
Previously, Yi Yun had devoured Patriarch Pillheart and company's fire seeds. He was paying them back in their own coin, so it was reasonable. However, if he were to kill the three alchemist sages here, it would be going overboard. If that happened, people would spread the news that the Nine Li Magus Empire had hired alchemists from all over the world to aid it because of the Herb Nurturing Array's instability. Then, they killed all the alchemist sages out of malicious intent. If that story spread, the Nine Li Magus Empire would probably be blacklisted by all alchemists. It would also stop warriors from ever coming to the Nine Li Magus Empire in the future.
Since the Nine Li Magus Empire was treating Yi Yun well, Old Snake decided to give up on the thought of killing the trio.
Although the trio hated Yi Yun and wanted him dead, Old Snake was confident that it would not be long before Yi Yun had the ability to stand up to them on his own.
As such, Patriarch Pillheart and company were allowed to leave. Old Snake left Patriarch Pillheart's interspatial ring in the island in the array's core.
"Kid, this is the soil you wanted. I'll be going out to look around. Take your time studying the array."
Old Snake vanished after saying that.
Yi Yun needed a lot of time to research the array. Old Snake did not wish to spend time in the God Advent Tower any longer as it was too boring.
In fact, Old Snake ultimately had his own goals. He wished to find a means to cure himself of his internal injuries. And in order to seek them out, he needed to enter perilous lands. There were many places that Yi Yun was still incapable of entering.
"Senior, be careful."
Yi Yun watched Old Snake leave while inside the Herb Nurturing Array. At his present stage, it was impossible for him to help Old Snake. All he could do was remember the gratitude he had for Old Snake. He would repay him when he had the ability to in the future.
As the array turned calm, everything returned to normal.
Yi Yun took the Purple Numinous Herbal Soil and planted the Abyssal Red Lotus Seed into the soil. The Herb Nurturing Array was a land with rich fire-elemental laws. It was extremely suitable for nurturing and nourishing the Abyssal Red Lotus. With the Herb Nurturing Techniques that the divine alchemist left behind, Yi Yun was confident that he could revive the Abyssal Red Lotus.
Yi Yun was in no hurry to leave the array. He knew that the Herb Nurturing Array would require a long period of time to complete. He might as well cultivate as he studied the array.
The people from the Nine Li Magus Empire left as the array turned empty and quiet. Soon, it became empty, as if isolated from the world.
Time slowly passed as several years flew by. One day, Yi Yun switched the Ascending Dragon Cauldron with the Divine Alchemy Cauldron.
The array was set up by the divine alchemist after all. Although the Ascending Dragon Cauldron was powerful, it was not as suitable as the Divine Alchemy Cauldron in terms of compatibility.
Furthermore, the Herb Nurturing Array was now working as intended. A lot of the remaining work was now just a matter of time. Yi Yun did not wish to keep waiting inside the array.
Yi Yun's cultivation level slowly improved as he made use of the time to cultivate. He had already stabilized the beginning stages of the Supremacy realm.
However, Yi Yun had been in seclusion for too long prior to this. Continued seclusion was no longer as effective. He felt that he needed to exit seclusion. After all, enhancing his cultivation level was of utmost importance to him.
Apart from that, Yi Yun was constantly worried about Lin Xintong. He did not know what sort of treatment Lin Xintong was receiving in the White Lunar Divine Empire.
Having come to the Nine Li Magus Empire, Yi Yun was already not very far from the White Lunar Divine Empire.
His eagerness to find Lin Xintong turned more intense as a result.
However, the White Lunar Divine Empire was a massive entity. Bai Yueyin was even more mysterious and unfathomable. Now that Yi Yun had reached the level of Supremacy, he finally felt that he had the necessary confidence to head to the White Lunar Divine Empire and search for Lin Xintong.
The Nine Li Magus Maiden would often visit the Herb Nurturing Array's periphery.
With the alchemists' departure, the Nine Li Magus Empire closed its doors once again. It returned to its quiet and peaceful days.
The Nine Li Magus Maiden felt calm whenever she looked at the Herb Nurturing Array.
That day, a figure suddenly charged out of the array.
Yi Yun was finally ready to leave the Herb Nurturing Array after a few years.
"Young Master Yi." The Nine Li Magus Maiden's eyes had a joyful glint to them. "Thank you."
"I was merely upholding an agreement we made. Your Highness, there's no need thank me," said Yi Yun.
The Nine Li Magus Maiden looked at him. After a few years, Yi Yun seemed to glow with divine light. At a glance, he looked like a mortal scion with no cultivation level but his bearing was extraordinary.
"Young Master, your cultivation level seems to have improved," said the Nine Li Magus Maiden.
Yi Yun smiled faintly before asking. "Might I ask Your Highness a question? Do you know much about the White Lunar Divine Empire?"
"The White Lunar Divine Empire? In terms of history, the White Lunar Divine Empire hasn't been established for that long. However, the White Lunar Goddess Empress has lived for an exceedingly long time. She knows just too many secrets. The White Lunar Divine Empire she established is one of the strongest factions in the Sinkhole. I admire her greatly. I would definitely like to meet her if I had the chance. However, she has not appeared for about ten million years now. It's rumored that she is currently experiencing a tribulation in a secret land."
"Oh? Does Your Highness know what the White Lunar Goddess Empress's cultivation level is?"
"She's definitely a Godly Monarch. Aside from that, it's unknown how long she has been one," said Nine Li Magus Maiden emotively. The realm of Godly Monarch was something countless people yearned for. Once one became a Godly Monarch, their lifespans would be in units of hundreds of millions of years. They possessed strength that was completely unimaginable to ordinary warriors.
"Does Your Highness know how many Godly Monarchs there are in the Sinkhole?" asked Yi Yun. He had always been curious about this point in particular.
"No, I don't." Nine Li Magus Maiden shook her head. "If we are just looking back over the recent tens of millions of years, there has not been any talk of anyone becoming a Godly Monarch. However, the Sinkhole has such a long history. Some Godly Monarchs have lived from ancient times to this present day. The existence of such Godly Monarchs are unknown, much less seekable. As they have lived for a period longer than recorded history, their existences have already been buried in the annals of history. It's not possible to tell if the accounts in many books are legend or truth. Some of the legendary figures written of in books might still be alive but only thought of as legends."
Living longer than recorded history…
Yi Yun drew a gasp. It sounded shocking. Going from a Divine Lord to a Godly Monarch was a qualitative leap in terms of vitality. They were figures that had truly witnessed history. Records in books might become insubstantial or lost as long periods of time passed, but the events of history might be something a present day Godly Monarch had experienced personally.
"You asked me how many Godly Monarchs there are. Although I do not know, I can give you a vague idea. In the entire Sinkhole, the Godly Monarchs that are known—such as figures like the White Lunar Goddess Empress—number only a handful. As for the reclusive Godly Monarchs, no one can tell you. For instance, my Nine Li Magus Empire does not have a Godly Monarch. The strongest figures are Elder Blackrock and my master, the High Priest. Their lifespans do not exceed fifty or sixty million years either."
"Thank you for telling me this, Your Highness." Yi Yun nodded. By telling him the Nine Li Magus Empire's actual strength, it showed that she trusted him.